Friday, February 26, 2016

Accused denies gathering intel for Lahad Datu intruders

A 68-year-old accused in the Lahad Datu intrusion case told the Kota Kinabalu High Court today that he did not come to Sabah to gather information on Malaysia's security forces. Habil Suhaili disagreed with deputy public prosecutor Datuk Jamil Aripin during cross-examination that he had intended to provide information on the security forces to the armed group that had intruded into Kampung Tanduo in Lahad Datu about three years ago. "I came to Sabah with my son Timhar on February 6, 2013, to visit my other son Bakrin. "We boarded a ferry from the Philippines and entered Malaysia using our passports," said the accused in the Suluk language, whose testimony was translated by a court interpreter. Habil, who uses a wheelchair, was entering his defence for a charge of being a member of a terrorist group and had chosen to testify in the witness dock. Earlier, during the examination-in-chief, the accused told the court that he knew of two Sulu sultans – Sultan Esmail Kiram and Sultan Muedzul Lail Kiram – but had no knowledge of the claim on Sabah by various individuals who claimed to be the rightful Sulu sultan. "My son Timhar was a bodyguard to Sultan Esmail in 2007, but left (the service to Sultan Esmail) in 2009. "After 2009, he (Timhar) served as security personnel for a mayor, and then he was employed by Sultan Muedzul Lail as a bodyguard," he said. To a question from counsel Majnah Abdillah, Habil said relations between his family and Sultan Esmail's family became distant when Timhar worked for Sultan Muedzul Lail. Thirteen Filipinos and a local man are entering their defence before Justice Stephen Chung at the Sabah Prison Department for various offences allegedly committed between February 12 and April 10, 2013. Some of the accused are facing one to multiple charges of being members of a terrorist group and waging war against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. Some are alleged to have wilfully harboured individuals they knew to be members of a terrorist group, or solicited or gave support to a terrorist group. The hearing continues on February 29. – Bernama, February 26, 2016.]]>

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